MBA Trips and Tips: Brian

September 2, 2015
Michelle Yang
3 min read

We took a bit of a break, but we’re back again with our MBA Trips and Tips series, which features interviews with MBA students, as they share information about how they organize group trips, how Wetravel has helped them, and their own personal experiences with group travel. Our third installment is with Brian, a graduate of UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, who talked about his group trip to South by Southwest (SxSW)!

Q. Tell us a little bit more about your experiences organizing group trips. 

A. I organized the trip for 35 students down to SxSW in Austin. A classmate and I split up the responsibilities and started planning about a year in advance. Although it was a lot of work, it certainly was rewarding – everyone had a great time and was extremely appreciative of the work that we did.

What do you enjoy about group travel?

Because I’m a socially active person and I simply enjoy other people’s company, I don’t think I would enjoy traveling solo. I think it’s great to have different people to interact with and share different experiences with, especially when I’m on the road for a long time.

What are some of the issues that you faced while planning your group trip and how did you overcome them?

The main issue for us was that SxSW is an extremely popular week in Austin – hotel prices were usually 3x what they would be the rest of the year, so our only option with a group that large was to look early for an Airbnb/Homeaway/VRBO rental. The additional complication with students is that everyone wants to do different things throughout the school year and plans can change quickly. Getting people to commit and pay cash, so we could put a deposit down on the house was hard. Since it was their first time at SxSW, a lot of people had questions about what we were doing, so using WeTravel was really helpful in collecting the payments upfront and communicating to everyone what the plan was. Additionally, it was great that people could see who else was going, which helped encourage others to put down their deposit in a situation like this.

Image source: Brian Canty
Image source: Brian Canty

If you could travel to any place in the world with anyone, where would you go and who would join you? (Don’t worry about the budget and feel free to take someone famous along with you!)

I would love to do a road trip from Bolivia to Patagonia! I have been dying to go to Patagonia for so long – I love the outdoors and really want to bike the ‘death road’ in Bolivia as well as see the salt flats and then do a week or two camping/hiking in Patagonia.

Lastly, do you have any tips for people who are starting to organize their own group trips?

Yes – be patient, and know that it will be rewarding and everyone will love the work that you do, despite how frustrating it might be…unless, of course, you use WeTravel, then it’s a breeze!

We hope that you enjoyed this blog post and found it useful. Make sure to check out our previous entries with Yusuke and Naoko! And if you liked this series, check out our Travel Influencer series, which features interviews with other seasoned travelers.

Featured Image Source: Brian Canty